A man accused of running over his wife did not try to avoid the woman when his vehicle struck her as she walked along a street, police officers testified Friday.
Isiah James Keitt, 41, of Midwest City, is charged with first-degree murder in the March 6 death of Liliya Kasabova.
Keitt also is charged with manslaughter in the alternative.
Kasabova, 36, was hit about 7 p.m. March 6 in the 1100 block of St. John Avenue. She was taken to a hospital where she died a short time later.
Witnesses told police they saw the couple arguing in a convenience store parking lot a block south of where Kasabova was found in a shallow drainage ditch.
Matt Mercer, a Midwest City police officer who specializes in reconstructing accident scenes, testified at Keitt's preliminary hearing that there were no visible skid marks, indicating the driver made no attempt to stop.
Keitt's vehicle appeared to be going straight when Kasabova was struck, Mercer said, adding that the driver of the car didn't try to change direction.
Midwest City police Detective Darrell Miller testified that Keitt was so intoxicated the night Kasabova died that he waited until the next day to interview him.
Keitt's blood alcohol was measured at 0.08, making him legally drunk, the detective said.
Miller said Keitt offered three versions of what happened, including one in which he said he tried to block his wife's path with his car and struck her instead. Keitt said he “panicked,” turning the wheel to the right to “accelerate off her,” Miller testified.
That explanation, the detective said, was consistent with evidence found at the scene.
Keitt's attorneys argued their client was intoxicated and did not mean to kill Kasabova and should not be charged with murder.
“He was trying to cut her off, he had no intention of killing his wife at this time,” Oklahoma County Assistant Public Defender Mark McCormick told the judge. “There was no malice aforethought.”
Special Judge Larry A. Jones found enough evidence to send Keitt to trial.